Top tips for keeping well in winter

See your pharmacist if you’re feeling under the weather. Even if you have just a cough or a cold, your pharmacist might be able to help you prevent it from becoming worse. If you are unable to visit a pharmacy, make sure to call them to discuss your symptoms. If you need more urgent advice, ring the NHS helpline on 111.

Consider a flu jab. Over 65s living in the UK are eligible for a free flu jab to protect themselves from the flu virus, which can be unpredictable and serious. You can get a flu jab at your GP surgery or at participating pharmacies.

Keep warm. Wearing several layers of clothing during the cold winter months is much better for us than just one thick layer. Clothes that are made from cotton, wool or fleecy fibres help to maintain body heat, and are better than silky and thin materials that don’t insulate well.

Keep active. Try not to sit still for more than an hour at a time. Even simply standing up to stretch your legs for a few moments can help to increase your body temperature. If you have good mobility, moderate exercise is a great way of keeping warm when temperatures are low.

Warm drinks. When you get up to stretch, why not make yourself a hot drink to help keep you warm? You should also try to eat at least one hot meal a day. Making sure warm foods and drink are going into your system will keep your weight up and contribute to keeping your body temperature up.

A well-stocked medicine cabinet. If you treat early-onset symptoms of illness they are less likely to develop into anything more serious. By keeping your medicine cabinet stocked, you could avoid having to go out in the cold, if you do find yourself unwell.

The temperatures have been really cold lately, so it’s very important to think about what you can do to protect more vulnerable friends and family from the ill-effects of the cold.

At Home Instead, our wonderful CAREGivers can help older people to stay well and can help with many of the tips mentioned here.